Texas K9 Series (book review)

 giveaway graphic

I recently joined FlyBy Promotions as a reviewer, and my first review for them is this one. And better yet, they’ve given me a copy of a book to give away to one of you! I’m super excited to host my first giveaway, and I can’t wait to announce the winner of this giveaway later this week. But first, the review.

I didn’t actually review the book that I’m giving away, but I did read a book of the same genre by the same author. For the purposes of this review, I was given a copy of Texas K-9 Unit Series of e-books. This set is available for $11.99 on Amazon. I received a single PDF which included: Tracking Justice by Shirlee McCoy, Detection Mission by Margaret Daley, and Guard Duty by Sharon Dunn. Because of the time limitation for this review, I’ve only had a chance to read Tracking Justice thus far, so that’s what I’ll be reviewing today.

Summary of Tracking Justice

When  young Brady Billows is discovered missing in the middle of the night, his (single) mother, Eva, does what any mom would do: she calls the police. When the detective who shows up on her door at 2 a.m. is the handsome Austin Black (and his bloodhound, Justice), Eva knows she’s in trouble. Can she walk the line between allowing Austin to be the father-figure she knows Brady needs while still protecting him from disappointment when Austin leaves after the case is solved? And just as importantly, can she learn to trust Austin herself? Can she give him her heart? Or will she be the one responsible for Austin’s departure after the case?

My Thoughts

I’m really torn on this book. I liked the plot, and I found the ending satisfying.

But.

I didn’t care for either of the main characters. Eva was too wishy-washy for me, and I found her constant “Oh, I love Austin” followed immediately (like in the very next sentence) by “But I shouldn’t like him” very exhausting. Austin, while strong in his professional life, seemed like a mess in person. He wanted to be with Eva – and Brady – but he wasn’t willing to really do anything about it. I suppose that can be considered chivalrous (he didn’t push her), but it didn’t strike me that way; it seemed more wimpy.

Also, I felt like I was getting literary whiplash reading this book. It’s written in third person, with first person leaning. What I mean by that is that it’s not using words like “I did this” in the narrative; rather “Eva did this.” By “first person leaning,” I mean that she tells us the story from one person’s perspective (Eva’s or Austin’s) at a time. However, when Eva and Austin are together, she goes back and forth between the characters with no warning.

Example (and this just made up out of my head, not a quote from the book):

Eva walked into the kitchen. I shouldn’t be doing this, she thought.

Austin followed her, struck by her beauty.

If not for that “first person leaning” thing, this might not be such a big deal, but because it is there most of the time, going from what Eva was thinking to what Austin was thinking with no warning was something that didn’t sit well with me.

Now, that said, I’m willing to admit that a lot of people probably wouldn’t notice that and be irritated by it. But with my writing background, I notice things like that. I don’t know that it’s a problem with the book or just an issue of me being too picky. But there it is, for what it’s worth.

Would I recommend this book? Sure. It was a good read. Easy, light, enough depth with the fluff to keep things interesting. Will I read it again? Probably not.

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.